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Wing Commander III: Alcor System


Alcor 1

Flight Deck, TCS Victory.
Leaky Ship?
Tolwyn: I am returning command of the Victory to you, Captain…
Eisen: Yes, sir.
Tolwyn: They knew where we were going, and when… They knew exactly where to strike… I have every reason to suspect you have a leaky ship, Captain.
Eisen: Respectfully, sir, I resent such innuendoes concerning my crew’s loyalty. Battles are won or lost. There are never any guarantees. And at the time, she was your ship… sir.
Tolwyn: Fight well, Captain. The struggle will only get harder.
Rec Room, TCS Victory.
Coriolis: You look like you could use some anaesthetic. You know, it’s kinda spooky, the way the Kilrathi zeroed in on that soft spot… I suppose Thrakhath zoomed in on yours too… I feel for ya, Colonel. Do you want some company?
[She’s okay. She understands…]
Maverick: Company? Yeah. But you better put that away – before I put it away.
Coriolis: Hey, kick in a bulkhead or something and get it out somehow, okay? Don’t wait till you get in the cockpit–
Eisen: Red alert! Red alert! All pilots up! We are being attacked! This is not a drill!
[Ah, forget it. Have another drink…]
Maverick: No. I’ll be okay…
Eisen: Red alert! Red alert! All pilots up! We are being attacked! This is not a drill! I repeat, this is not a drill!
Fly Alcor 1
Maverick did not fly drunk:
Rollins: <sigh> We dodged a bullet that time, sir. You’re cleared to land. (Success)
Uh, we got hit pretty hard, but they tell me there’s still a flight deck left, so you’re cleared, Colonel. (Failure)
Maverick flew drunk:
Rollins: Uh, Colonel – you didn’t exactly seem yourself out there–
Flint: Colonel! Request to see you when you land!
Rollins: Hey Lieutenant! I’m trying to work here, thank you very much! Unbelievable, what does she think this is, a free-for-all chat channel?
You’re clear to land, Colonel. The Victory only sustained minor damage. (Success)
We got hit pretty hard, Colonel, but they tell me there’s still a flight deck left, so you’re cleared. (Failure)
Flight Deck, TCS Victory.
Maverick and Flint
Maverick did not fly drunk:
Flint: Are you all right?
Maverick: I’ve had better days…
Flint: Still, the way you’ve been holding up, considering… You’ve really been showing us what you’re made of.
Maverick: Yeah, well, thanks, Flint.
Flint: When I think about how stupidly I acted back in Locanda… Look, I’m sorry about Angel. Everyone on board is. She must have been something.
Maverick: <nods>
Maverick flew drunk:
Flint: Is that the way you face your problems?
Maverick: Look, I don’t need this.
Flint: “You have to fly with your head, not your heart.” Those words ring a bell?
[She’s right…]
Maverick: You take good notes, Lieutenant. You think we can avoid a scramble long enough for me to get a cup of coffee?
Flint: The Kilrathi don’t usually upload their schedule in advance. Look, I’m sorry about Angel. Everyone on board is. We know she was someone quite special.
Maverick: Yeah… that she was…
[Get off my back… (I don’t have to listen to this…)]
Maverick: You have no right to lecture me.
Flint: Look, I’m sorry about Angel, we all are but–
Maverick: You want to lodge a formal complaint regarding your commanding officer, Lieutenant, I suggest you do so. Otherwise, back off.
Flint: Yes, sir.

Alcor 2

Rec Room, TCS Victory.
Cobra and Rollins
Cobra: The ship’s sensors could track movement in every compartment, right?
Rollins: Well, yeah, I suppose. Supposedly. I suppose that’s possible. I’ll have to do some fancy byte-surgery…
Cobra: Then do it. Make that paranoia of yours pay off for once–
Maverick: That would be a change for the lieutenant. You wanna fill me in?
Rollins: Yeah, those crazy coded transmissions are still being sent, sir. Cobra here, she thinks Hobbes–
Maverick: I know what Cobra thinks.
Cobra: Sir, they were waiting for the Behemoth. They know what we’re going to do even before we do. And I can’t believe you’re still sympathetic towards a Kilrathi, not after–
[She’s got a point…]
Maverick: Look, I’ll admit it. It seems like we’ve been having more that just a little bad luck lately. Now, I want you to keep working on those decodes.
Rollins: Yes, sir!
Cobra: And Hobbes, sir?
Maverick: Right now, I’d say none of us is above suspicion.
[Doesn’t much matter…]
Maverick: Look, we can’t pretend any more. Confed’s losing the war, that’s the real cause of our bad luck. And will you lay off Hobbes? If we do lose, can you imagine what they’ll do to him?
Paladin Arrives
Gunnery Control, TCS Victory.
Maverick: You missed all the fun.
Paladin: I wish I’d been there. I’m tired of flying a desk. I hear you had a little run-in with, uh, Thrakhath.
Maverick: Yes I did… you bastard.
Paladin: It pains me that you had to find out that way.
Maverick: How long have you known?
Paladin: Oh… since the Concordia went down.
[Punch the bastard…]
Paladin: Well, you haven’t lost your touch.
[Paladin’s on my side…]
Paladin: Go on, laddie. Take your best shot. C’mon.
Maverick: On Vespus, you stood there and lied to me…
Paladin: I was under orders, laddie.
Maverick: All those missions we flew together, you on my wing, protecting me–
Paladin: I was protecting you by not telling you! Did you see what you nearly did when you found out? I was protecting you from yourself!
Maverick: You know how much she meant to me.
Paladin: I do. But this is war, laddie. All of us have lost someone dear to us. That does not make you special.
Maverick: Yeah. I’ve heard that before.
Paladin: Besides, Angel may yet help us win this thing. She sent one final transmission before she was taken prisoner on Kilrah. I think you may be interested to hear it. I’ll wait for you in the briefing room.
Briefing Room, TCS Victory.
Paladin: We’ve got a lot to cover. The Behemoth was not the only rabbit in, uh, Confed’s hat. We in Covert had our own long shot project. It became much more of a reality once Angel got to Kilrah.
Classified Intel Report
Paladin: Angel carried with her an impressive scientific package. Part of it she placed in orbit around the Kilrathi homeworld, other parts were seeded at ground level. All are cloaked, and send their low-level signals to a comm-sat parked just outside the Kilrah system, which feeds the data to us. Now, it turns out that the Kilrah Homeworld is a pretty fragile place, layered with active fault lines. Its tectonic plates keep shuffling themselves like a deck of cards. Now, it’s my guess that the heavy seismic activity is what propelled the Kilrathi into becoming such an aggressive, space-faring race.
Eisen: So Kilrah has an Achilles’ heel…
Paladin: Over the last decade, work has proceeded on a tectonic-frequency weapon … the ‘Temblor Bomb’. The theory goes that if we can fire this thing with absolute precision, its detonation could achieve the proper resonant frequency and trigger a tectonic reaction that would literally shake their planet apart.
Maverick: But even if we could destroy their homeworld, they’ve got an entire army deployed.
Paladin: Their entire culture is based on a strict, centralised hierarchy: ‘All roads lead to Kilrah’. Every Kilrathi lives and dies for the Emperor. Destroy that hierarchy… and you destroy them.
Maverick: So, what are we waiting for?
Paladin: Ah, well, we have one problem: There is no bomb. A year ago, Dr Severin, the man in charge of this project, was captured by the Kilrathi. We’ve tried putting the pieces together without him, but ended up with zip.
Eisen: And now we have to go and get him.
Paladin: Well, it beats waiting for the Kilrathi to parole him.
Maverick: What? We gotta go after this guy on a prison planet?
Paladin: The only chance we’ve got at finishing the T-Bomb.
Eisen: Let’s get down to this mission’s specifics. The prison planet is Alcor V. We’ll enter the system through the ‘back door’, under normal drive. Colonel, I want you to scout ahead, clear the asteroid field, and make sure we are not detected.
Paladin: You got it, laddie?
Maverick: Yes, sir.
Fly Alcor 2
Rollins: <hums> Looks like you swept out a nice path for us, sir. You’re cleared to land. <hums> (Success)
Tough break, sir. We’re gonna keep our fingers crossed that we can get away with this anyway. You’re cleared to land. (Failure)

Alcor 3

Rec Rooom, TCS Victory.
Vagabond: The grapevine’s really been humming. Everyone knows we’re getting Dr Severin. Or Dr Death, as he’s known to some of his old friends…
Maverick: You know him?
Vagabond: Yeah, we go back, Sevvy and I. Now, you ask me, the Kilrathi did the right thing locking him up.
Maverick: Why do I get the feeling this has to do with your classified past?
Vagabond
Vagabond: Look, you know I haven’t always been a pilot. You ever hear about Pax 7?
Maverick: Yeah. A lot of people got killed. Uh, it was an accident of some sort.
Vagabond: Millions got killed. And it was no accident. Just one of ole Doc Sevvy’s demolitions tests. I was workin’ for him back then. I’m certain he knew exactly what was going to happen, but he saw no reason to warn the civilians. Afterwards, Confed tried to cover it up. But who really cared, anyway? The Paxons were just a backwards people who had nothing to offer the war effort. That’s when I quit demolitions. In the cockpit, I can see the enemy – they line right in my gun-sights and I can… And the pilots I shoot down sure ain’t civilians. But if there’s a hell to go to, I know they’ve got a special place reserved for me. And Sevvy.
[He shouldn’t blame himself…]
Maverick: Maybe there’s a little redemption possible if we get this guy and he helps us win the war.
Vagabond: Talk about ironies…
[This guy’s wrapped way too tight…]
Maverick: That’s an awful lot of baggage to be carrying around. Maybe you should sit these missions out.
Vagabond: No way, Colonel. I wanna be right there when we get this guy.
Rollins: Flight deck! Emergency! We have trouble on the flight deck! Flight deck! Emergency! We have trouble on the flight deck!
Flight Deck, TCS Victory.
Cobra: Colonel–
Maverick: Hobbes?
Eisen: <nods>
Cobra: He was trying to send this–
Cobra’s Death
Paladin: Over the last decade, work has proceeded on a tectonic-frequency weapon – the ‘Temblor Bomb’. The theory goes that if we can fire this thing with absolute precision, its detonation will achieve a proper resonant frequen–
Maverick: All this time, he’s had us bugged…
Vaquero: We have to get her to the infirmary–
Cobra: No – get Hobbes – you still have time–
Eisen: That’s a negative, Colonel. We’re almost at Alcor V, and a pursuit now will jeopardise the entire operation.
[Listen to reason…]
Maverick: It was Hobbes… it was Hobbes…
Next: Alcor 4
[Revenge!]
Maverick: It was Hobbes…
Eisen: Colonel… Colonel… Colonel!
Fly Alcor 3
Hobbes: Ah, my old friend. As I predicted, we are meeting again… but this time as what we were destined to be… enemies. Enemies who now must fight to the death. You are a noble warrior. And because of that… I wish you well: that our last meeting be purely a duel of will and courage, subject not to arbitrary twists of fate…
I see your fighting skills have not diminished, my friend.
A fatal blow… Heart of the Tiger… Farewell, my friend…
Eisen: I suppose you expect to be congratulated for terminating Hobbes. What you deserve is a court-martial, mister, for disobeying my orders. Your impulses left us one gun short when we needed ’em all, Colonel. The Victory was ambushed while you were on your little joy-ride. You’re cleared to land. Report to me in the barracks ASAP! (Success)
I ought to court-martial you for disobeying my orders, Colonel. You can’t imagine how dearly your impulses have cost us – we came under attack during your little joy-ride. You’re cleared to land. Report to me in the barracks ASAP. (Failure)

Alcor 4

Alcor 3 not flown:
Berths, TCS Victory.
Eisen: Usually have to write to the family when something like this happens. In Cobra’s case, we were the only family she had.
Maverick: I didn’t treat her very well, for family. What happened with Hobbes, Captain?
Eisen: When you have an answer to that, you let me know, Colonel. In any event, we have to move quickly now, there’s no telling how much the Kilrathi already know.
Alcor 3 flown:
Berths, TCS Victory.
Eisen: Do you have any idea how much I hate this little ritual? Now I have to compose a letter to Vaquero’s parents, it’s supposed to make them feel proud of their son… I have written too many death-comms. I suppose they’ll want this. Blast it, man! You put your own needs above that of the ship’s! You can’t ever do that!
Maverick: I’ll write the death-comm. What happened with Hobbes, Captain?
Eisen: When you have an answer to that, Colonel, you let me know. In any event, we have to move quickly now, because there’s no telling how much the Kilrathi already know.
Funeral
Alcor 3 not flown:
Flight Deck, TCS Victory.
Maverick: We are here to bid farewell to Lieutenant Laurel Buckley. I didn’t know Cobra well. Doubt that any of us did. But I do know that she was haunted by aspects of this war that were darker than anything most of us can imagine. She is finally free of that pain.
Alcor 3 flown:
Flight Deck, TCS Victory.
Maverick: At no time does this war seem more cruel than when it ends the life of someone as young as Lieutenant Mitchell Lopez… A man young enough to still have dreams. Vaquero was a pilot who at all times flew with heart and pride.
Hobbes’ Explanation
Berths, TCS Victory.
Hobbes: Colonel, I am returning to my Homeworld – but my admiration for you compels me to provide an explanation for my actions. You must understand that the Hobbes you knew was a construct, the result of an identity-overlay experiment, initiated long ago by Prince Thrakhath. Lord Ralgha nar Hhallas, you have never truly met. I myself never met him until I heard the Prince utter your Kilrathi title, “The Heart of the Tiger”. This was the trigger that awakened my true personality – hidden for so many years. Once awakened by the words of my Prince, I had no choice but to perform his bidding. Kilrathi do not surrender, nor do we betray. And yet, in being true to my kind, I have betrayed you – for I have watched you, Colonel – I know you are an honourable warrior… If we meet again… we will have no choice but to perform our duties… with honour…
Briefing Room, TCS Victory.
Paladin: Well, this is it, Colonel. Time to extract us a scientist.
Eisen: Your responsibility will be to provide air cover for the Marines who will descend to the planet and get Dr Severin out.
Paladin: I know you hear this all the time, because I used to hear it all the time too – but this may be the most important mission you’ll ever fly. I wish I had the reflexes I had 10 years ago, laddie – I’d be flying on your wing. It’s going to take all the self-control I have not to strap myself back into the cockpit, because if we fail here… God help Humanity.
Fly Alcor 4
Descent to Alcor V
Landing Strip, Alcor V.
Vagabond on Alcor V…
Vagabond: Long time no see, Doc. Take it easy, boys. I’ve done what I came to do.
Ascent from Alcor V
Success:
Rollins: (…so Vagabond decks the guy! <laughs>) Oh, we got him, sir, but you’ll never guess who’s landed himself in the brig! You’re cleared– oh, General Taggart wants to speak to you.
Paladin: Well done, laddie! You’ve done us all proud. Wish I could stick around and celebrate when you land, but now that we’ve got Severin, I’ve got a lot of work to do. You’ll hear from me again.
Doctor Severin rescued: Freya System
Failure:
Rollins: I suppose that’s a new definition of ‘disaster’, eh Colonel? I’ve got more bad news. Confed finally owned up to how badly the war’s going. I told you this was coming, didn’t I? A massive Kilrathi armada is threatening Earth and we’re jumping to Proxima to help hold them off. You’re clear to land.
Doctor Severin abandoned: Proxima System
Victory Group Jump Sequence

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